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Volunteer Info

The success of many of our recreation and environmental programs depends on the volunteer efforts from the members of our community. If you're looking for a way to make a difference, meet new people or expand a hobby, there are many different ways you can participate to match your skills or areas of interest.

How to Volunteer
View the volunteer opportunity descriptions below to see what suits you best. Maybe you have an interest in helping others, want to learn more about the community or meet other friendly, helpful people. We welcome: 

  • Students age 16 and up with parent or guardian signature, ages 13-16 with parent or guardian supervision.  Volunteer hours may apply to service learning project hours for high school or college credit. 
  • Adults age 18 and older
  • Seniors
  • Groups – Corporations, non-profits, service organizations, etc.

Application Process
To volunteer print and complete the Volunteer Application or Golf Volunteer Application. Please check your areas of interest and email or mail the application in. Once received, a member of the Volunteer Services team will contact you to discuss the potential of a volunteer placement. If an appropriate placement cannot be arranged at that time, we will keep your application on file up to one year. As opportunities become available, we will notify you.

Volunteer Application or Golf Volunteer Application and return it to volunteer@oakgov.com or:

Oakland County Parks
Volunteer Coordinator
2800 Watkins Lake Road
Waterford, MI 48328

To speak to a volunteer coordinator or schedule a group volunteer event, call 248-975-9717 or volunteer@oakgov.com.

Current Volunteers: Monthly Volunteer Time Sheet 

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities:

Click here for a printable list

Saturdays December 5, 2015, January 9, February 6, March 5, April 2, May 7, 2016
History Center
– History Corps Volunteers are sought to work in the History Center to complete inventory, restoration and cataloging the artifacts.
Upper Bushman Manor House – 10275 Sashabaw Road, Clarkston, MI
8:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Volunteers needed: 8
Assist with asset inventory, asset restoration, artifact preparation and the library.
Uniform: Work clothes

Fridays and Saturdays beginning in November through April
Project Feeder Watch

Wint Nature Center at Independence Oaks – 9501 Sashabaw Road, Clarkston, MI 48348
30 minute timeslots
We are looking for experienced birders to watch the feeders at Independence Oaks and track what you view.
Uniform: green volunteer t-shirt, name tag

Friday, Nov. 20, 2015
Novi Hoedown - An evening with dinner, dancing and DJ for adults with developmental disabilities.

Novi Civic Center – 45175 W. 10 Mile Road, Novi, MI 48375
5:45 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.
Volunteers needed: 12
Assist with event set-up; tear down, serving refreshments, and interacting with the participants.
Uniform: Western Attire, name tag

Dec. 3 and 10, 2015
Holiday Shopping Nights – An opportunity for the public to shop local vendors at the Market.
Oakland County Market – 2350 Pontiac Lake Road, Waterford, MI 48328
4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Volunteers needed: 2
Assist with event set-up; tear down, s’mores area, and interacting with the participants.
Uniform: Green volunteer t-shirt, name tag

Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015
Jingle Bell Ball – A Holiday event with dinner, dancing and a visit from Santa for adults with developmental disabilities.

Waterford CIA – 5640 Williams Lake Road, Waterford, MI 48327
5:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Volunteers needed: 6
Assist with event set-up; tear down, serving refreshments, Santa’s helpers and interacting with the participants.
Uniform: Festive Holiday shirts, name tag

Tuesday Dec. 29, 2015
Almost New Year’s South - A Holiday event with dinner, dancing and a countdown to the New Year for adults with developmental disabilities.
Lathrup Village Community Center – 27400 Southfield Road, Southfield, MI 48076
Shift 1: 3:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. and Shift 2: 6:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Volunteers needed: 12 each shift
Assist with event set-up; tear down, serving refreshments, and interacting with the participants.
Uniform: Festive Holiday shirts, name tag

Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015
Almost New Year’s North - A Holiday event with dinner, dancing and a countdown to the New Year for adults with developmental disabilities.

Waterford Activity Center – 2800 Watkins Lake Road, Waterford, MI 48328
5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Volunteers needed: 12
Assist with event set-up; tear down, serving refreshments, and interacting with the participants.
Uniform: Festive Holiday shirts, name tag

Friday – Sunday, Jan. 22–24, 2016
Fire & Ice Festival – Nearly 200 Oakland County Parks and Recreation volunteers ensure that the Tubing Hill, Dog Sledding and Ice Skating Rink participants get the most out of family, friends and outdoor winter activities.

Downtown Rochester
Volunteers needed: 20-30 per shift
Assist with event set-up; tear down, serving refreshments, tubing hill, dog sledding, ice skating rink and more!
Uniform: Dress for the weather!

Volunteer Opportunities throughout the parks system:

Adaptive Recreation
Assist in hosting special, sport and social events for individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities, seniors and veterans. Activities include special events, socials, tours, teaching and adapting sports skills for individuals with disabilities.

Bicycle Motocross (BMX at Waterford Oaks)
Track maintenance begins in April. Assist in the weekly operation of BMX by providing technical assistance at practices and races. Duties include bike inspection, registration, scoring, staging, corner marshaling, and concessions.

Campground Hosts and Labor
Assist campers by answering questions, explaining the rules in a pleasant and helpful manner, providing directions and assisting with check-in.  Volunteers may also help with maintaining flower beds and monitoring restrooms for cleanliness.

Campground Recreation 
Memorial Day-Labor Day
Assist with activities including arts and crafts, DJ dances, face painting, games, etc. for campers at Addison and Groveland Oaks. Theme weekends include carnival, comedy fun day, July 4th festivities, blues bash and boo bash. Also volunteer to help set up, implement and clean up one-day special events. 

Dog Park Ambassadors (Lyon Oaks, Orion Oaks and Red Oaks)
Become and ambassador and answer visitors’ general questions, distribute park materials, and report concerns or comments to park management. Gatekeepers sign up for shifts to support customer service and park security. Other opportunities include assisting with one-day special events and annual clean-up days at three dog parks.

Golf Courses and Programs
Starters, rangers, cart attendants and pro shop/phones assist at five golf courses. Assist with tournaments, leagues, and special events.  

Nature Centers
Assist in supporting the efforts of nature center staff by greeting Nature Center guests, caring for captive animals, assisting with nature education programs, scout days and trail walks, preparing program and craft supplies, or maintaining outdoor gardens.

Natural Resources Stewardship
Assist with restoration management of our natural areas by helping with the control and removal of invasive plant species and the collection and dispersal of native plant seed. Field work activities vary from season to season and range from hand-pulling weedy species, to removing large shrubs with had saws and garden loppers. Volunteers should be willing and able to work in a variety of field conditions, including exposure to heat, cold, insects, and poisonous plants.

Be the eyes and ears of the Parks trails by using a formal reporting and tracking process while you enjoy the outdoors as you patrol park trails on foot. Promote safe and proper use of the trails by providing information to visitors on Park rules and policies. 

Special Events
Assist with one-day events throughout the year including Fire & Ice winter festival, the springtime Marshmallow Drop at Catalpa Oaks, mountain bike races, fishing events, County Market events, or Boo Bash and Haunted Hallows events in the fall.

Other Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteer Deer Hunters
Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission, in cooperation with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, is seeking volunteers to participate in special controlled hunts at Addison Oaks County Park and Independence Oaks County Park under guidelines of 2015 Michigan Department of Natural Resources Block Permit Program. The hunt is developed as a wildlife management program to reduce and maintain the Whitetail Deer (antlerless only) population at the park. For more information on the Addison Oaks County Park special controlled hunt, click here or the Independence Oaks County Park special controlled hunt, click here.

Water Resources Commissioner's Office
Assist with Adopt-a-Stream (stream monitoring and clean-ups) and cooperative lakes monitoring. 248-858-0958

Master Gardener Volunteer Program
The Michigan Master Gardener Volunteer Program is a horticulture education and volunteer leader training program offered by Michigan State University Extension in Oakland County. An interest in plants, a personal commitment to volunteerism and an enthusiasm for sharing knowledge with others are the only prerequisites for application. Applicants attend classes learning basic horticultural principles and environmentally sound gardening practices. They then provide a minimum of 40 hours of volunteer service to their community. Oakland County offers a daytime session in the fall (August-November) or an evening session in the winter (January-April). Each session is 13 weeks and held in Waterford. Linda Smith: 248-858-0887

 Open House

Open House
Volunteer Podcast